21 October 2014

A planning application for what is believed to be Britain's largest school conversion project has been approved at a meeting this morning.

Planning permission was granted today for Northamptonshire County Council to proceed with a £22 million project to convert a former Royal Mail sorting office in Northampton into an all-through primary, secondary and sixth-form school.

A positive icon

Councillor Matt Golby, cabinet member for learning, skills and education, said: "This a fantastic opportunity for us to take a building that is liability to the local area, an icon of neglect and abandonment and make it iconic for positive and aspirational reasons.

"The school will not only alleviate pressure on school places, which is a growing challenge in Northampton, but give us scope and space to be really innovative and creative with its design especially in the areas of creative arts and design technology utilising the double-height spaces in the building."

The planning application for the site on Barrack Road in the Semilong area of Northampton was approved at a meeting of the council's development control committee this morning.

Additional uses

The building will accommodate a total of 2220 students with additional space for community and commercial use. The planning application proposes potential uses including a private nursery, gym and residential apartments.

The school will operate as a Free School, with the Department for Education currently considering applications from potential sponsors.